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Demand Learning and Firm Dynamics: Evidence from Exporters

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Abstract

This paper provides direct evidence that learning about demand is an important driver of firms' dynamics. We present a model of Bayesian learning in which firms are uncertain about their idiosyncratic demand in each of the markets they serve, and update their beliefs as noisy information arrives. Firms are predicted to update more their beliefs to a given demand shock, the younger they are. We test and empirically confirm this prediction, using the structure of the model together with exporter-level data to identify idiosyncratic demand shocks and the firms’ beliefs about future demand. Consistent with the theory, we also find that the learning process is weaker in more uncertain environments.

Suggested Citation

  • Nicolas Berman & Vincent Rebeyrol & Vincent Vicard, 2018. "Demand Learning and Firm Dynamics: Evidence from Exporters," AMSE Working Papers 1846, Aix-Marseille School of Economics, France.
  • Handle: RePEc:aim:wpaimx:1846
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    firm growth; belief updating; demand; exports; uncertainty;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms

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